Regarding Scripture: Deuteronomy 4.27-31
The tribulations of life are vast. Each one experiences poignant moments of life where they feel the agony of defeat – the sweating of one’s clothes into transparency while anxiously waiting, hoping against hope that the news is not unwelcomed, overpowering and depressive. These moments while nearly unbearable become manageable for those who are devoted completely to God and implicitly trust Jehovah. However, for those who either do not know God, or have estranged themselves from God these moments become tragedies. The question is to whom is humanity to turn?
It seems difficult to accept, but most people, and myself included, sometimes have to find themselves bloodied, lying helplessly in the pit of despair before considering alternatives for reality. The problem for western people is absolutely no different than ancient man. Ancient man, as recorded within sacred Scripture, sought help, just like we seek help. They sought help and protection from precious metal figurines, stone statues, or wooden gods, or as Paul described in Romans worshipping the images of humans, birds, four-footed beasts and creeping things. While many in the United States may not seek help from or worship these things, they still seek help and worship things made by human hands.
Many seek help from rational thought derived from centuries and millennia of human psychological and physiological development, hoping that the god of human rationale will give intellectual deliverance. Others seek emotional stability through Entertainment, Internet, instant messages, or images. Yet, these too are all human implements in which some seek emotional fulfillment and stability. Still others seek financial help from the money developed by the U.S. mint – when it is nothing but a plate designed and carved by a human – in hopes that it will give them security; perhaps others use credit cards bearing the image of some human design.
Man-made temples surround us. Consider the monumental size of financial institutions (from bank buildings to Wall Street), educational institutions (from the size of universities to their stadiums), and entertainment institutions (from the movie houses to arenas). Their size is not accidental. They are built giving the impression of strength, stability, and safety. But it is an illusion that many eagerly and willingly sacrifice daily, weekly, monthly, yearly for as long as they live to these man-made temples. The sadness and emptiness of it all is that these things gods neither see, nor hear, nor eat, nor smell – for they are false gods. These gods are completely unable to deliver and leaving humans dismayed, unfulfilled, and wasted. It is in this place that too many people find themselves – a true tragedy.
For the one who finds their soul in this despair there is only one genuine deliverance. This comes only from the God who feels and lives. However to gain hope in the midst of turmoil, one has to seek the true and living God with every emotional outlet, every moral fiber, every intellectual thought, and every physical aspect.1 Only when God is sought with every ounce of one’s emotional, spiritual, mental, and physical being God can be found. But finding Him in only the beginning of hope, true deliverance comes from being obedient to His commands.2 Obedience brings true strength, true stability, and true safety.3 If life is causing you tribulation are you seeking God with everything?
1 Deuteronomy 6.5; Mark 12.30
2 Deuteronomy 8.2; Matthew 7.21-23
3 Matthew 6.25-34; Romans 12.2